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Vedic Cosmology

In article <>, (Robert Roosen) wrote:
> 	Here is an excellent description of the Narlikar/Burbidge
> cosmology.  I would appreciate elaboration on the points of manvantara
> and pralaya, and whether the material universe dissolves after the tenth
> and final incarnation of Vishnu.

   I don't think the general readership of this area would be familiar
   with the terms you have used so a little explanation is

   The Vedic cosmology rests on the understanding that nothing happens
   by chance or accident. Every action has some intelligent direction
   behind it. From the creation of the universe to the blinking of our
   eyelids, there is a director, a person in charge to make sure
   everything goes on OK. It's a familiar scenario. We see it every
   day from multi-national companies to parents and friends
   associations--there is some organization, some management
   structure, some decision making process.  The Vedic understanding
   holds that the system we see here also applies on the universal
   level and beyond.

   The most important person (except Visnu and Siva) in this universe,
   the "President" if you like, is Lord Brahma. He is born at the time
   the universe is created and he dies at the time of it's destruction
   (pralaya) so his life-span is the life-span of the universe. It's a
   very, very long time from our point of view.

           sahasra-yuga-paryantam ahar yad brahmano viduh
           ratrim yuga-sahasrantam te 'ho-ratra-vido janah

"By human calculation, a thousand ages taken together is the duration
of Brahma's one day. And such also is the duration of his night."

   A yuga is 4,320,000 solar years so one of Lord Brahma's days is
   4,320,000,000 years! He also, like us lives for about 100 years so
   you can calculate the life-span of the universe. It's a long time.
   His planet is situated in such a way that during this 4,320,000,000
   year period there is continual daylight. At the end of his day
   there is a partial devistation of the universe. This takes the form
   of an inundation. The whole lower and middle planetary systems are
   flooded leaving only the upper planets (where Lord Brahma and the
   other demigods live) untouched. As the sun is situated in the
   middle of the universe it is also covered with water and everything
   in the universe becomes dark. That's the end of Brahma's day. As
   the waters gradually subside the sun starts to shine again and
   morning comes for Lord Brahma and he, and the other demigods wake
   up to clean up the mess and set the ball rolling for another
   thousand yuga's.

   There are also two other types of pralaya's (devistations). One
   occurs at the death of Brahma, called the maha pralaya (great
   devistation), and that is the end of this universe. The other
   occurs (sometimes or always depending on the commentators-It's not
   completly agreed upon) at the end of the life of Manu. Manu is the
   chief progenator (person in charge of generating population) in the
   universe so he is called "the father of mankind". Undoubtedly the
   word "man" has been derived from "Manu".

   The Manu's don't reign for as long as Lord Brahma. There are
   fourteen Manu's in every day of Brahma's life and a manvantara is
   the period in which one Manu rules. Each Manu's period last
   seventy-two yugas (72 * 4,320,000). Manu is the author of the
   "Manu-samhita", the codes or laws meant to be obeyed by mankind.

   As a matter of interest the current Manu is Vaivasvata Manu, he is
   the seventh Manu in the current day of Lord Brahma. So Brahma is
   now about 50 or half-way through his life.

Thanks for the question.

All Glories to His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
who has so nicely translated all the essential Vedic scriptures into
English even a fool like me can have some understanding of what's
going on in the universe and beyond!  Hare Krishna.

P.S. I have posted another reply for your remaining question, "Whether the
     material universe dissolves after the tenth and final incarnation of


Madhudvisa dasa          |
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           He gives everyone full independence--whatever one likes.

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